Editorial: Expecting the Unexpected


Ariel Landry

This is a n Illustration of Marquette Hall facing down a storm. President Tetlow sent out an email addressing both the hurricane in Hawaii and the anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. Photo credit: Ariel Landry

Moving to the Big Easy can be a pretty big shift. Whether you’re just not used to living in the city or you’re struggling to keep up with the streetcar, moving here can be a pretty big culture shock for some people. Most of the learning will come with time and experience. However, one of New Orlean’s little idiosyncrasies that you need to be prepared for now would be the weather. Not just the humidity, or even the flooding. We’re talking about hurricanes.

Hawaii has had to evacuate some of its residents as 52 inches of rain from the hurricane flooded the island. Hurricane Lane has the potential to be the single costliest hurricane in the recorded history of the state, according to AccuWeather. The people of Hawaii are dealing with a tragedy and our hearts go out to them. And, unfortunately, it’s so easy for many of us to empathize because we were in that same situation not that long ago. In fact, Hurricane Katrina hit the gulf coast almost thirteen years ago to the day of writing this.

Most everyone knows of Hurricane Katrina, whether you heard about it from the news while it was happening or after the fact. But for many of us, Hurricane Katrina was about more than just the time that Kanye West made a fool of himself on TV. It was traumatic. Some of our staff had their houses flooded. One of our staff members spent days not knowing where his father was. A staff members grandmother lost her house and every picture from her childhood. I personally remember when a tree almost fell on my mom. An ancient oak tree collapsed and almost hit the house while we were playing a card game by the window. The astute reader may recognize this as the worst place to be when a hurricane is going on. But that’s where we decided to play because we had never seen a hurricane before, and we weren’t taking it seriously.

If you’ve never experienced weather like that before, it’s easy to underestimate it. We all remember last year when a “hurricane day” amounted to nothing more than a light drizzle. But it’s important to recognize that this may not always be the case. We’ve seen the emergency preparedness emails that Loyola sends out recommending what to do in case evacuation is necessary, and we know that Loyola has measures in place in case a hurricane does touch campus. But believe us when we say that you, personally and seriously, need a plan.

You need a place to evacuate to in case it becomes too dangerous to stay in the city. You need to have emergency supplies, be that flashlights, water bottles, or emergency generators if you live off campus. It might seem like a waste of money when things are going well, but if push comes to shove, they’ll be worth it.

We hope it never will, but when the storm is here, it’s better to be prepared. Don’t get us wrong, hurricane parties are fun and all, but they’re more of a myth than anything else. Most of us who remember the storm know that it’s not really the time to party. It’s the a time to be vigilant and prepared, and if you live in New Orleans, you should be too. We know it’s easy to gloss over those emails, but this is something you need to think about before it’s knocking down your front door.